Book – The Testaments: The Sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale
Author – Margaret Atwood
Publisher – Chatto & Windus
Pages – 432
Ratings – 3.5 ⭐
About the book –
Margaret Atwood’s dystopian masterpiece, The Handmaid’s Tale, is a modern classic. Now she brings the iconic story to a dramatic conclusion in this riveting sequel.
More than fifteen years after the events of The Handmaid’s Tale, the theocratic regime of the Republic of Gilead maintains its grip on power, but there are signs it is beginning to rot from within. At this crucial moment, the lives of three radically different women converge, with potentially explosive results.
Two have grown up as part of the first generation to come of age in the new order. The testimonies of these two young women are joined by a third voice: a woman who wields power through the ruthless accumulation and deployment of secrets. The book opens up the innermost workings of Gilead as each woman is forced to come to terms with who she is, and how far she will go for what she believes.
This book is like a calm water. Beautiful, serene and somehow.. at times.. mundane.
The narrations are brilliant, no wonder. But the element of ‘what next’ is completely missing. I was not curious of what was to happen. But I was fascinated by what was happening. There were twists and turns which made me feel anxious and excited but the winds of tranquility were present.
The book describes the aftermath and the situation in Gilead with it’s dystopian edge putting women as protagonists and things that are about to unfold for them in this sequence to The Handmaid Tale.
The narrations? Distinctive! The plot? Blaaah.
This sequence brings together three narrators — Agnes, Daisy, and Aunt Lydia — to tell the continuing stories of Gilead.
You see? I have got a mixed feelings for this one. The book did not live to my anticipation and the hype for me to a certain extent but I won’t discard this book. Consider it, read it. It is lyrical and will make you laugh and emotional at times. May be you’ll shed a tear or two. Gilead was indeed very terrifying.
It will make you feel things in a calm way. It will make you want to stop reading but not let you put the book down for some reason. This might not end up as classic as this open ended plot was very much predictable. Probably there’s a gap between the two books – The Handmaid’s Tail and The Testaments. May be a book to bridge this gap would not be too much to ask for?
I would have settled this with 3⭐ but as I progressed with this read, I couldn’t do other wise but say that this was almost a 4 star read.
So, 3.50 ⭐
You can buy the book from here.
– Kinjal Parekh